Many couples are divided on whether or not to have a first look at their wedding. Some couples aren’t sure what a first look is, other couples don’t realize there is more than one kind of first look to choose from. Either way, it’s all good. We’re going to unpack it all here in a very simple way.
What is a first look?
A first look is typically when the bride or groom reveals themself for the first time on their wedding day to their partner. They would have been separated since the morning and would not have seen each other for even a moment. When you’re fully dressed, you go find a romantic, hidden away spot to do the big reveal.. aka the first look.. with your partner. There’s no one else but you and your soon-to-be spouse (and also your photographer)
Why do a first look?
It’s a special moment just for the two of you, away from your wedding party, and away from all your guests. It’s a quiet and private moment for you two. To have a hug and a kiss. To slow down the day and appreciate each other and your love. To create a moment just about the two of you.
After your wedding is all said and done, you’ll also have beautiful photos that captured this special moment together. It always brings back the emotions!
But what about seeing each other for the first time walking down the aisle?
I don’t want anyone to feel pressured to have a first look that doesn’t feel it’s right for them. As a wedding photographer, I have photographed countless of weddings with and without a first look. It goes great either way. Some couples prefer the tradition of waiting to see each other for the first time walking down the aisle. If that’s you, then awesome!
If you’re wondering, however, does it takes away from that special moment walking down the aisle?
I’ve asked a lot of couples this question directly. Because in the end, it matters more what couples say than what I say.
Every couple I’ve asked has said the same thing – it does NOT take away from the special moment walking down the aisle. They say it feels like two completely different moments – each one special in a different way that doesn’t detract from one another.
The photos below are of the SAME couple above that had their first look with the green leaf wall.
There are other types of first looks
If having a first look between you and your fiance is not for you, then definitely listen up to these 2 other ways to have a first look that I really love!
A hidden first look with your fiance
You and your fiance meet at the corner of 2 walls and don’t look at each other. I repeat, you don’t turn the last corner and you do not lay eyes on your fiance. Instead, you each reach your hand around and hold hands. Give each other a squeeze. Think about writing a hand-written note the morning of your wedding day and pass them to each other so you can read them silently while holding each other’s hands. It’s very romantic and feels very old-timey and nostalgic!
A first look with a parent or loved one
I love the idea of having a first look between bride and father, or perhaps a grandparent. Weddings, traditions, and family go hand in hand. There’s no better opportunity than at a wedding to share a special moment with a parent or loved one. Take a look at this bride who decided to not have a first look with her fiance, and instead had a first look with her dad. It’s so hard not to get emotional everytime I look back at these photos!!
What’s your favorite kind of first look? Have you changed your mind in any direction after reading this? Would love to hear your thoughts!